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Dean Lestal
Dean Lestal
Senior Associate

Dean was admitted as a legal practitioner in February 2014, having completed a Bachelor of Laws. Whilst undertaking his university studies, Dean was employed as a paralegal for 3 years at the NSW Crown Solicitor’s Office, working for the Criminal Law and Commercial Litigation practice groups. Whilst working in the Commercial Litigation practice group, he was assigned to the largest litigated matter that the NSW State Government was involved in at that time.

Dean has been employed as a solicitor with Santone Lawyers since March 2014. Dean specialises in Family Law, Employment Law, Criminal Law and Administrative Law. Dean was admitted as an Accredited Specialist in Family Law by the NSW Law Society on 1 November 2021.

In his Family Law practice, Dean has a particular interest in financial matters involving forensic analysis, complex asset structures and taxation issues. He has represented multiple clients in difficult parenting cases involving significant family violence, mental health issues and relocation. He regularly appears as an advocate in interim and final family law proceedings, as well as attending with clients at Conciliation Conferences and legally assisted mediations to negotiate pragmatic resolutions to matters at an early stage.

In his Employment Law practice, Dean has acted for numerous clients in unfair dismissal proceedings, general protections proceedings, contract disputes and restraint of trade issues, underpayment matters and discrimination/harassment claims. He frequently appears as an advocate at interlocutory, interim and final hearings. He has also attended numerous Conciliation Conferences and mediations in employment matters, which have resulted in settlement outcomes for his clients without proceeding to litigation.

In his Criminal Law practice, Dean regularly appears as an advocate in both defended and sentence hearings in criminal law matters and traffic offences. In his other practice areas, Dean has acted for multiple clients in other civil claims, such as property damage, debt recovery and contract disputes. He also regularly appears as an advocate in the Administrative and Equal Opportunity and Occupational Divisions of the NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal, particularly in relation to Working With Children Check matters and licencing disputes.

Dean is an avid sports fan who plays weekend club cricket and basketball. He supports the Parramatta Eels, Essendon Bombers and the Los Angeles Lakers.

Reported cases:

Quinn v Kai Seng Australia Holding Pty Ltd & Ors [2019] FCCA 1442 (as advocate for the Applicant)

Application by Busways Blacktown Pty Ltd & Busways Blacktown North Pty Ltd and Others [2016] FWC 6055 (as advocate for the TWU)

Clifford v The Trustee for Healthy Hearing & Balance Care [2016] FCCA 322 (as advocate for the Applicant - first instance decision)

Clifford v The Trustee for Healthy Hearing & Balance Care [2016] FCCA 1637 (as advocate for the Applicant)

Tomaszewski v Roads and Maritime Services [2016] NSWCATOD 156 (as advocate for the Applicant)

CKC v Children’s Guardian [2016] NSWCATAD 236 (as advocate for the Applicant)

CGN v Children’s Guardian [2016] NSWCATAD 138 (as advocate for the Applicant)

CWG v Children's Guardian [2017] NSWCATAD 99 (as advocate for the Applicant)

Berger & Tallis [2018] FamCA 1112 (instructing solicitor)

Hodgkinson & Hodgkinson [2016] FCCA 1632 (instructing solicitor)

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